Questioning Pakistan’s stand on Kashmir, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti today asked whether militant attack on BSF convoy in Bijbehara was the way to show its love for the people.
“First Pathankote airbase attack and then these type of incidents, Pakistan must think over it, if you (Pakistan) love the people of Kashmir, then this is not the way to express it,” Mehbooba Mufti said during a function here. “Had there been a retaliatory fire (from BSF), how many innocent civilians would have lost their lives in today’s attack,” she said.
While condemning the attack in which three BSF personnel were killed, the CM said that had the BSF retaliated to the attack, a Handwara like situation would have emerged in Bijbehara. “What did they get by killing the BSF personnel who come to do their duty in the valley? There were civilians in the area, children, old aged, had the BSF retaliated how many civilians casualties would have taken place?” she said. She said that common people in Kashmir do not support such type of attacks.
“People might have supported all this post 1987 elections but they do not support it any longer”, she said. She said that Pakistan should think over this as such type of incidents won’t give anything to it and the common people were bearing the brunt. “Not only people get killed but the economy also suffers. My father Mufti Mohammed Sayeed toiled to bring tourists to Kashmir but such type of attacks also deter tourists from visiting the Valley,” she said.
Targeting the separatists for opposing the setting up of colonies for retired soldiers and Kashmiri Pandits in the Valley, she said that even when her government has made it clear that no Sainik colony would come up in Kashmir, separatists were giving strike calls.
Mehbooba also said that the situation was not conducive to settling the Kashmiri Pandits back to their native villages in the valley. “We cannot ask the Kashmiri Pandits to return to their villages, they need a place to live for sometime in the Valley from where they can later return to their villages. Even the leaders and party workers who are Muslims and have security guards are staying in guest houses. They are unable to live in their villages how can Kashmiri Pandits be asked to go and live in villages,” she said.